Seasons Change

Seasons Change“Welcome to Damh the Bard’s therapy session!”

It’s what I say when I’m getting towards the end of Wild Mountain Thyme live. It’s meant as a bit of fun, to encourage those who might be reticent about singing along, to join in. It builds community. Brings people together. It’s what music does, as seen at this weekend’s Glastonbury festival. 100,000 people singing along with Adele and Coldplay, in harmony, smiling, and feeling connected with each other. It’s what we need so much right now.

The spiritual path we follow needs to be strong. It needs to be flexible, and to be able to inspire, and to offer guidance during times of crisis and change. I was recently involved in a project called The Green Album. It’s a wonderful collection of songs offered by Pagan musicians around the world with each song’s focus being the environment. My song is called How can we believe that we own it all and the lyrics are about our relationship with the Natural World. How nature programs reflect that relationship by showing structures built by animals as natural, yet a human-built lake or city isn’t. That somehow we see ourselves as separate observers of nature, not really a part of it.

One of the verses goes like this:

Turn on the TV what do I see?

Politicians who disagree,

And another country overthrown.

Sometimes I feel like the world’s insane,

But then when I look again,

I see the only madness is our own.

And this is one of the huge ways that my Pagan Path helps me in moments of crisis. To know that I’m not separate from Nature, that I’m a part of it. The human world can feel all encompassing, overwhelming, so loud that it can drown out everything else. But my Druidry helps me to step out of that for a moment, and still see that everything else carries on, regardless. The land, the plants, the animals and birds all around me are getting on with the same stuff they always do. The Sun rises and sets, and the Moon waxes and wanes.

As Pagans many of us celebrate the turning seasons with 8 seasonal festivals. Change is a huge part of our spirituality. We do this to constantly recognise that Autumn and Winter are an equal part of the Wheel (ok, some of us Spring and Summer people accept this with a little reticence, but it’s true). They break down the detritus, to add fertility to the soil, so that new growth will emerge in the Spring. This constant anabolic and catabolic dance is a necessity. Even our bodies are a part of that dance as we return to the earth too. So change cannot come as a surprise. Like a Winter storm it’s not always comfortable and can be challenging, yet with each passing day Spring draws closer, the dawn comes. This endless cycle shows me that there is always hope.

I thankfully live in a democracy. We were given the opportunity to vote and lots of us took it. It didn’t turn out the way I personally wanted, but I’m not going to throw my toys out of the pram. It’s time to see where this all goes.

Some of you might be thinking, what a bloody hippy! That’s ok. I’m good with that. Right now it might feel like I’m walking through an immense, seemingly barren, field in Winter. That I’m surrounded by mud and earth. But then I see the video of a policeman stopping to propose to his boyfriend, and I hear 100,000 voices singing songs of love and hope with Adele and Coldplay, these and many more images and sounds of hope are the fresh green shoots pushing through the earth into the light. Life is enduring, this is one of the other great gifts that my path has given me – an acceptance of change, but also a feeling that I am a part of that change, not separate from it, and therefore can positively affect and guide it. This helps me to see more and more of those fresh green shoots.

The field has been ploughed, changed. But there is green. The seeds are always yearning for the sun.

The seasons, the cycles of life, show me that this is inevitable.

10 responses to “Seasons Change”

  1. I saw that video too, and it really made my day. Yes change is normal and good. I’m sure that even our searing summers here must do some sort of good. 😀

    In dark times for our world, I always try to remember that quote by Fred Rogers. “When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, “Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.”

    We may be be a mad species, but we are also the only one that fairly consistently shows compassion to both our own kind and other beings, even when it doesn’t benefit us directly to do so. Not everyone, but so very many do. We’re ok. We have redeeming features, some which are surely art and music!

  2. The dark days always pass and the light does return as we know, watching the wheel of the year with it’s endless cycle of death and renewal.

    I am saddened by the turmoil, very saddened by how folks are treating each other and very scared of what seems to be man’s inhumanity to man. Yet, in this , the seeds of hope and renewal are there. We might not be able to see them properly yet, but I have to believe they are there, just as they are deep in the ground in the depths of the winter.

    The policeman’s proposal was just such a flash of light and a statement of love, a seed of hope for the future . He was brave doing this so publicly and I applaud him. We need more folks to spread the message of love, especially now. Yes, I am another “aging hippy”, but ….

    People naturally worry about change and resist change, preferring to live with what we know and what is comfortable. It is challenging, change never seems to come easily, but sometimes we need change to help us to grow. We are some of the lucky ones who have our touchstone within the sacred nature all around us. always the same and always changing.

    Spring and summer will return. Isn’t there something about the greater storm, the brighter the rainbow ? I shall watch for that rainbow.

    • From one aging hippie to another, your article was uplifting, hopeful and described beautiful.

  3. Humans grieve and many feel a deep sense of loss at the moment. Symptoms of grief include anger, denial, shock, disbelief and yearning.
    Unfortunately the anger is often misplaced and blame apportioned while acceptance and comprehension is being sought. In the end though, acceptance and hope often prevail.
    It feels like our communities are distressed in this way and patience, understanding and compassion with ourselves and others will do nothing other than help.
    Love is sublime and radiates and can be shown in so many ways. If each day we strive to be kind then bit by bit the healing and resolution of grief will be found. It is a process not an event, so be patient but ever hopeful. Humans are capable of great things.

  4. This has made my heart sing, I love nature and spend as much time outdoors as I can.

    I also think as long as the nice people who voted out and the people who wanted to stay in can get together to spread Love, Caring and Understanding we can rebuild out country in a good way, the nasty racists and bigots will not win through.

    I must admit what this may mean for planet Earth and the Environment but then I thought again and realised that nature will always win through whatever she doesn’t actually need human kind to survive but we need her.

    I can’t seen anything wrong with being a Hippy personally, I’m one too and wouldn’t want to be any other way.

    Love, Light and Blessings on everyone

  5. “…these and many more images and sounds of hope are the fresh green shoots pushing through the earth into the light.”

    Leave it to a Bard to make a point with imagery. 🙂

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